Date: 4th October 2012
Dr Steve Cartman is a Senior Research Fellow at the University of Nottingham and has been using a Whitley 1000 Workstation for the last ten years. He is a member of the Clostridia Research Group, which was established by Professor Nigel Minton in 2004. Today, the laboratory at Nottingham has eight DWS workstations in one laboratory.
Professor Minton’s laboratory, which developed the ClosTron – a universal system for gene knock-out in Clostridium species – currently has two major avenues of research on-going:
1) Clostridium difficile: This hospital ‘superbug’ causes a potentially fatal diarrhoeal disease and is the major cause of hospital acquired infection in Europe and North America. Their research is aimed at gaining a better understanding of the infection process with a view to developing more effective countermeasures.
2) Biotechnology / Biological engineering: This area of research harnesses industrially valuable properties of bacteria with a view to producing chemicals and second-generation biofuels.
Don Whitley workstations are vital to their research programmes because the microorganisms they work with are obligate anaerobes. They have several users per workstation, meaning that workstations are in constant use, with little respite. The reliability and robust nature of the workstations means that their research programmes can progress without interruptions due to equipment failure.
All their workstations are on a Don Whitley Scientific service contract. Steve rates their particular service engineer as “outstanding”. Regular servicing is taken care of without staff having to remember that a service is due and go to the trouble of having to call in to book it. Steve says: “We are notified well in advance of cabinets needing a service and servicing is arranged and carried out at our convenience.”
And Steve’s final comment about dealing with Don Whitley Scientific is: “DWS staff are courteous, accommodating and excellent at their jobs. Our experience has always been entirely positive.”
Dr Steve Cartman
Senior Research Fellow
University of Nottingham